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Privacy Commissioner of Canada Reaches $1,000,000 Milestone in Supporting Canadian Privacy Research

Ottawa, June 27, 2007 – The Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada (OPC) has reached a landmark in supporting Canadian privacy research by pledging $258,000 in research grants to six innovative organizations through the Office’s Contributions program. Currently in its fourth year, the program has now allocated over $1,000,000 to more than 30 privacy research projects in Canada.

“In the course of the last three years, we’ve seen excellent research produced on various privacy issues that are attracting national and international focus,” said the Privacy Commissioner of Canada, Jennifer Stoddart. “I’m proud that my Office has been able to support research into privacy issues – which are increasingly important to Canadians.”

This year’s program was designed to stimulate research into: the protection of personal information on the internet; the challenges of secure identification or authentification; and the intersection of the public and private sectors with regard to the use of personal information.

“Getting ourselves educated on these issues is a positive step in addressing legislative gaps and helping people take responsibility for the way they handle personal information. Privacy research is also an important tool for public education,” said Commissioner Stoddart. “We have taken active steps to disseminate research results and we will continue to do so.”

A call for proposals for this year’s program was issued in January 2007.

Each proposal was weighed on its merit and recipients were selected after a rigorous screening process. These projects are expected to be completed in 2008.

Some projects funded in previous years will be featured at the 29th International Conference of Data Protection and Privacy Commissioners, to be held this September in Montreal.

Here are some brief details on the six projects the OPC will be funding this year:

Organization Project Name Amount
Canadian Internet Policy and Public Interest Clinic (CIPPIC),
University of Ottawa
Ottawa, ON
Online Privacy Threats: Trends, Developments and Responses  $50,000
Centre for Innovation, Law and Policy (CILP),
University of Toronto
Toronto, ON
Personal Information Protection in the Face of Crime and Terror: Information Sharing by Private Enterprises for National Security and Law Enforcement Purposes $50,000
Law Area, Faculty of Business,
Ryerson University
Toronto, ON
The Business Risks of Online Social Networks  $47,725
Option consommateurs
Montreal, QC
Managing Personal Information in the Name of the Federal Government: What do Citizens Know About the Information They Provide to Financial Institutions and to What Degree is the Information Protected? $45,300
University of Ontario Institute of Technology
Oshawa, ON
PIPEDA-Compliant Privacy Access Control Model for Protected Health Information $42,550
Department of Computer Science,
Memorial University of Newfoundland
St. John’s, NL
Private/Public Sharing of Personal Information: Lessons from the Health Sector $22,425

The Privacy Commissioner of Canada is mandated by Parliament to act as an ombudsman, advocate and guardian of privacy and the protection of personal information rights of Canadians.

View our Backgrounder.

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For more information and/or media interview requests, please contact:

Valerie Akujobi
Media Relations
Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada
Tel: (613) 992-3745

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